Wolverine Essentials provides necessities for UM-Flint students

Eleni Batsios, Editor-in-chief

Wolverine Essentials provides necessities for all students on campus.

The University of Michigan-Flint campus has seen its fair share of transformations over the past four years, and that includes the expansion of Wolverine Essentials. Formerly known as the Wolverine Food Den, the organization has stocked its shelves with anything a student could need, ranging from food, clothing, personal care items and other household items like toilet paper.

Wolverine Essentials lives up to its name, as it is truly essential to a place like UM-Flint. There is a large population of low-income students, transfer students, and students who have no means of leaving campus that can benefit from supplemental food and toiletries. 

The idea was launched back in 2015 by social work students who aimed to serve their community and wanted to survey its needs. The original idea of a food den wasn’t approved until 2019 and as the name implies, only included food. This past year, the Den expanded into Wolverine Essentials and now includes all necessities. 

Wolverine Essentials is stocked by donations and shipments from other food banks, including the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, as well as donations from the students, faculty, and staff of UM-Flint. The Food Bank sends Wolverine Essentials an ordering spreadsheet and they can purchase items from that list.

“It’s really a one-stop shop for all students,” says coordinator Emily Smith. Smith is a computer science major who transferred to the University of Michigan-Flint and immediately looked for volunteer opportunities on campus. 

Smith’s favorite part about working at Wolverine Essentials is getting to know the students who come in. “I’ve always loved to volunteer and I love getting to know everyone. They tell me their stories and I’m able to help them.”

All students can take whatever they need from Wolverine Essentials, all you need to do is fill out an intake form used for demographics that you can find on their door in UCEN or by emailing them at [email protected]

Neither Smith nor anyone who works at Wolverine Essentials passes down any judgment or stigma to those who visit. “We are open to anyone, there is no shame in needing a little support.” 

Wolverine Essentials is currently looking for volunteers. For more information visit their office at 381 University Center or email them at [email protected]